One of the hardest parts of any executive search is crafting "the pitch." The pitch is the least understood part of the search process.
It is certainly the most poorly executed.
You can take courses to become an expert in networking, and more courses in how to search the net to find names of qualified people (sourcing). You can take courses to become a better interviewer. But your results will always be mediocre if you fail to differentiate your job from all the other jobs that a qualified candidate might be interested in. Your search will not attract the best and brightest candidates until you give them a compelling reason to talk with you.To better understand what a great pitch is, let's first review what it is not:
To craft a great pitch, you need to know what results the candidate is expected to accomplish. Top performers are drawn to challenge, and want to know what will be the primary focus of their work.
A great pitch is like a dog whistle. Most people cannot hear it at all, but the intended recipient hears it loud and clear. So if you don't work in communications, a lot of things on the list above might sound like similar kinds of work. But if you are a top communications professional, one job will be much more appealing than another.
The secret to a great pitch is that it does not try to appeal to everyone. It uses the language of insiders, and is designed to appeal to only a select few people who love a specific kind of challenge. It viscerally connects with the people who care about the issues you care about and who share your cultural values. When the right person hears it, they say, "This job was tailor made for me," or "This is a DNA match to my skills." Everyone else's job just sounds like background noise by comparison.
A great pitch depends equally on what you put in AND what you leave out. But easy, it is not.
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